The first of what will be many reviews of Michael Lewis’ The Big Short are in. The Washington Post says,

If you read only one book about the causes of the recent financial crisis, let it be Michael Lewis’s, The Big Short.

That’s not because Lewis has put together the most comprehensive or authoritative analysis of all the misdeeds and misjudgments and missed signals that led to the biggest credit bubble the world has known. What makes his account so accessible is that he tells it through the eyes of the managers of three small hedge funds and a Deutsche Bank bond salesman, none of whom you’ve ever heard of. All, however, were among the first to see the folly and fraud behind the subprime fiasco, and to find ways to bet against it when everyone else thought them crazy.

In today’s NYT, Michiko Kakutani says that, “No one writes with more narrative panache about money and finance than Mr. Lewis, the author of Liar’s Poker, that now classic portrait of 1980s Wall Street,” but, she feels, by focusing on individuals who made millions by betting against the bubble, “the reader is put in the position of rooting for [them].”

Business Week also criticizes the Lewis for “glamorizing” these people, but “For those who enjoy a knife cutting through the obfuscation and arrogance of Wall Street, Lewis is king.”

Lewis appeared on Sixty Minutes on Sunday; he will appear on many other shows this week — the Today Show, NPR’s All Things Considered, and Jon Stewart, among others today, followed by Fresh Air and Charlie Rose tomorrow.

On Friday, we noted that library holds were surprisingly light; they began increasing rapidly over the weekend. The book is now at #1 on Amazon. Lewis’s earlier books are also rising — Liar’s Poker, Panic, Moneyball and Blind Side.


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